Cyrano de Bergerac
Cunning and Cleverness Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
Now then, to make
His Grace delay that quarter of an hour…
I have it! – up here –
(He steps on the bench, and climbs up the wall toward the balcony. The theorobos begin to play a mournful melody.)
Sad music – Ah, a man!...
(The music pauses on a sinister tremolo.)
Oh – very much a man! (III. 450-453)
Again, Rostand cleverly plays with the idea of genders indicated in music. Comte de Guiche is a very powerful and respected man, so the music warning of his entrance is especially mournful and sinister. It ends on a string tremolo – as if even the musician is scared of him.
I have something on my mind that troubles me.
What is that?
So have I.
You enjoy this!
CYRANO (Tightens his belt.)
It keeps me looking young.
My teeth are growing rusty.
My belly sounds as hollow as a drum.
Beat the long roll on it!
My ears are ringing.
Liar! A hungry belly has no ears.
Oh for a barrel of good wine!
CYRANO (Offers him his own helmet.)
I’ll swallow anything!
CYRANO (Throws him the book which he has in his hand.)
Try the "Iliad."
The Cardinal, he has four meals a day –
What does he care!
Ask him; he really ought
To send you…a spring lamb out of his flock,
Roasted whole –
Yes, and a bottle -
CYRANO (Exaggerates the manner of one speaking to a servant.)
If you please,
Richelieu – a little more of the Red Seal…
Ah, thank you!
And the salad –
Of course – Romaine! (IV. 50-65)
Cyrano uses his clever wordplay for good, in this case to distract the men from their hunger.
ROXANE (Comes out of the coach.)
(At the sound of a woman’s voices, every head is raised. Sensation.)
On the King’s service - You?
Yes – my own king –
Love! (IV. 234-235)
Roxane shows her cleverness by making a pun on "king"; it is clever enough to get her through the enemy Spanish lines.